The Tiny House Has Insurance!

Just before moving the tiny house out to the property I called Vast here in Marquette to inquire about insurance. I spoke with Karen and explained that I wanted to make an appointment to discuss insurance. When she asked for more imformation I explained that we were building something called a tiny house. She asked if she could find information about them online and I assured her that if she googled “tiny house” she would find more than enough information. I made an appointment to go to the office later that afternoon. When I showed up for the appointment Karen asked all sorts of questions about our little house. What was the square footage, how much had it cost so far, would it have a smoke alarm, would we anchor it to the ground…

She also told me that she called her insurance underwrite after she got off the phone with me and explained that she had a couple looking to get insurance for a tiny house. Her underwriter knew all about tiny houses and wanted to get one himself!

The tiny house is insured under a mobile home policy with a premium just under $400 a year. Compared to someone with a “real house” worth a couple hundred thousand dollars our policy seems rather pricy; however, in the insurance world, mobile homes are considered riskier and at $32 dollars a month we think it’s worth the price. I spoke with a coworker who’s camp is a mobile home and asked him what his premium was and he explained that he can’t get insurance on his camp because the mobile home is too old and that he would gladly pay $400 a year for coverage if he could get it.

Our policy covers $25,000 on the structure, $17,000 on personal belongings (I doubt we could even fit enough belongings in the tiny house to equal that), and $300,000 liability on the property. I did make an appointment with another insurance agency in town to compare policies. The other agent I spoke with seemed skeptical about being able to insure the tiny house, but he did say that the Vast policy looked about right. He told me he would look into things and call me back either way…I never heard back from him.

We did have to wait to get our physical address before we could sign our policy and that involved calling the Sheriff’s Department to request a fire number. The fire number took a few weeks to be issued but once I was able to give Vast our physical address we were insured. And I did confirm that we’re covered if the house is stolen!

Categories: Tiny House Insurance, Tiny House Living | Tags: , , | 15 Comments

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15 thoughts on “The Tiny House Has Insurance!

  1. Super news, did you also check to see if you are covered when moving the house, that would be a concern of mine.

    • The other agent I met with told me that travel endorsements could be added to policies; however, when I talked to Vast about that, Karen said it was not available with our policy. Since we couldn’t get insurance before we moved the house anyway we just had to hope for the best. However, i’ve since read the whole policy and it does look like it would be covered while being transported by a licensed carrier.

  2. Cassie

    This has always been a major concern for me. Right now I really would love to build a tiny house. Its just me right now and I’d like to keep my expenses as low as possible with establishing my credit. I don’t want to rent because I’m throwing away money I could be investing in a tiny house. I’m looking to move to Virginia Blue Ridge mountains….do you think this is doable. If I can find insurance I can build a tiny house. Congrats to you also.

  3. I will call her now: we are in the same state. Thanks so much for posting this.

  4. Bill Largent

    Great closing line

    Sent from my iPhone


  5. Ed

    I’m just wondering how you are legally able to live full-time year round in a trailer? I live in the same area and the building inspector Joe said you cannot live in a travel trailer as a residence year round? What did he say when you talked to him about doing what your doing? I even asked about living in a yurt and that has to be permitted and have bathroom or approved sanitation to be legal. You also don’t have a legal privy just a rented porta potty so how are they letting you get by? I get that folks build trailer houses to avoid codes but honestly its a lot cheaper and nicer building a small cabin when you own land. So why did you guys decide to go code-less with the trailer instead of just building a small cabin on your land? You could have put it right by the root cellar and had your food storage right there and easy drive in access? Funny we also looked at that 40 you bought when they had it up. Thanks for your time and look forward to your thoughts and answers how you got around things. Ciao-Ed

    • Hi Ed,
      Prior to buying our property we contacted the local zoning official and discussed our desires to build a barn before a house and that we wanted to camp on the land while building; we were told that was generally accepted. I have also read the zoning ordinances for our township and there is nothing that says you can not camp on your own land.
      When we first started thinking about buying land, we too, were interested in living in a yurt; however, we either had money to buy land and not be able to live on it or buy a yurt and have no land to put it on. That’s when we discovered tiny houses on wheels. Our goal is not to be code-less; our goal is affordability. By building the tiny house, we were able to start building two years ago before we even had land in mind. It allowed us to build in our spare time with our spare money while looking for the best land for us. And now it allows us to have a place to live while we build our homestead without taking on a large amount of debt. As far as the rented porta-potty, that is an approved method; we will eventually put in an approved out-house.

  6. Pingback: Tiny House Insurance | The Choo Choo Tiny House

  7. elaine

    I’ve spent the past week reading your entire blog with much interest! My husband and I will be building our own tiny house starting in the spring. Your blog gave us a lot of good information! Thanks for documenting your journey!

  8. Elizabeth

    Hey! Congrats on such a HUGE feat of your tiny house! I was wondering if you could help my husband and I with ours or at least the beginnings of it. We are in escanaba and just need some REAL insight and answers to all of our questions. We so look forward to hearing from you and we are so thankful for someone who has done this. In Marquette none the less!! You can email me or get back to me here. Thanks so much!

  9. John Stutzer

    Wonderful. For most of my adult life, I’ve either been a conventional home builder, or worked for one. But before that: I spent quite some time living off the back of my motorcycle in a tent, or later in a Toyota Land Cruiser pulling a 17 ft trailer.Over the years, I’ve come to realize what we live for (the mortgage) was wrong. That instead our homes should be for our living. It’s so wonderful to know that a Yooper and a Troll in Michigan understand innately what took me so long to learn.

    Thank you!
    John, Oxford Michigan

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